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Nichols Developing New Abc Series

September 22, 1986|MORGAN GENDEL

Mike Nichols is returning to television. The co-executive producer of the acclaimed 1976 series "Family," best known as a director of stage productions as well as the films "The Graduate" and, most recently, "Heartburn," Nichols is developing and producing two half-hour series for ABC.

Both series, along with any other Nichols TV projects, will be produced by Reeves Entertainment Group, with which Nichols last week announced an exclusive agreement. Reeves is the producer of "Kate & Allie," "Gimme a Break" and the new Lindsay Wagner series, 'Late Bloomer," set to premiere in January. The first Nichols project is expected to air next fall.

Susan Winston, the former executive producer of "Good Morning America" who recently made a brief attempt at revamping CBS' "Morning News," has joined Lorimar-Telepictures as an executive producer of original syndicated shows. Winston's TV production skills are expected to come in handy creating the so-called "infotainment" shows that mix news and features, although she will work in all areas of production, according to the Lorimar-Telepictures announcement.

Nothing this profitable ever dies: Paramount Pictures' TV distribution and video division will produce a new weekly hourlong series titled "Friday the 13th: The Television Series."

Designed for late-night and weekend programming on independent stations and network affiliates, the series borrows only its title and genre from the lucrative feature films.

The TV series will have a new cast of characters distinct from the films' and "will combine suspense and intrigue with the thrill of a horror mystery," Frank Kelly, senior vice president for Paramount Domestic Television and Video Programming, said in a press release.

The series will premiere next fall. It is being produced in association with Hometown Films.

When 18 CBS News camera crews roamed the streets of New York one recent weekend searching for the impact of drugs, the result was "48 Hours on Crack Street," a powerful two-hour special report broadcast Sept. 2 and again Friday night. Now, it is available on VHS format videocassette for $15.

Copies can be obtained by sending a check or money order to CBS Interactive Learning, 1 Fawcett Place, Greenwich, Conn. 06836; or by calling toll-free (800) CBS-ASK4.

The program, anchored by Dan Rather, drew the largest audience of any CBS documentary since 1977. Also contributing to the report were CBS reporters Ed Bradley, Harold Dow, Diane Sawyer and Bob Schieffer, among others, with Bill Moyers providing commentary.

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